More than 500,000 units of self-balancing scooters popularly known as hoverboards have been recalled due to fire hazard, according to the Consumer Product safety Commission (CPSC).
According to the CPSC, ten companies including Digital Gadgets LLC, Hoverboard LLC, Hype Wireless, Keenford, PTX Performance Products USA, Swagway LLC, Yuka Clothing, Boscov’s and Overstock.com are recalling certain brands of hoverboards.
After months of excellent, round-the-clock work by our engineers, investigators and compliance officers, CPSC has secured the recall of more than a half million hoverboards by 10 different companies. This is a major recall that families and consumers across the country should respond to — immediately,” said CPSC Chairman Elliot Kaye
Mr. Kaye added that the agency investigated more than 60 hoverboard fires in more than 20 states that resulted to more than $2 million in property damages. “To prevent another fire and possibly a death, I am urging consumers who have a recalled hoverboard to take advantage of this recall,” he said
Lithium-ion battery packs overheat
The hoverboards have two wheels at either end of a platform and powered by lithium-ion battery packs that can overheat. The agency already received at least 99 incidents reports wherein the lithium-ion battery packs overheated, sparked, smoked, caught on fire and/or exploded. The recalled products were made in China.
According to the CPSC, at least 18 consumers sustained injuries such as burns on their arms, legs, or necks. The agency is advising consumers to stop using the recalled hoverboards and to contact the companies recalling the product. They can ask for a full refund, a free repair or a free replacement depending on the model.
Merchandisers and online retailers sold the hoverboards between $350 and $900 in the United States from June 2015 to May 2016. The product was popular particularly during the holiday season, however many consumers posted photos and videos online showing it on fire.
The CPSC warned the manufacturers of the product to comply with the newly-created safety requirements. Failure to follow the safety requirement would lead to recalls.
Alibaba Group Holding (NYSE:BABA), one of the world’s largest online retailers required third-parties to get certifications from testing agencies before they can list their hoverboards on its marketplaces. The Chinese e-commerce took the action following the request of the CPSC.